This is, in my opinion, an ideal relationship to have with someone who you do not plan on being romantically involved with. In my experience it is characterized by two individuals who would not be interested in each other in any other setting but the one through which they first met. Two people with a bond of competency are both very good at what they do and appreciate each other's proficiency and dedication. There is less communication with words and more with actions.

I can sum up what I mean by allowing you to read something I wrote in the form of an unsent letter to a guy I swam with for a year or two on my small swim team some years ago:


We swam together tonight like we have all our lives this year. We didn't yell and scream at each other like we sometimes do. It doesn't matter. We don't have emotional baggage in each other.

Today you said you're going to run 20 miles a week in combat boots. I didn't think I'd miss you that much until now, when you're leaving. Lane 3 will never be the same.

I know you'll forget me in a month and a half, but I think I'll always remember you, and how much you changed and the stuff we never said.

I don't know much about you and you don't ask about me. I dn't care, because we are what we are.

And now you know I've already said goodbye to you and these days when we swim together are really nebulous non-existent exchanges of conversation.

I don't care.

But you know I'll miss you -- you're the best lane-pal a girl ever had.


People asked me a few times if I had a crush on him, which was not out of the realm of their possibilities, cute and funny guy that he was. I really meant it, though, when I replied to them he was just my friend.